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Warning: Deer can be violent

Dear Heloise: Thank you for alerting pet owners that male deer can be aggressive and violent with household pets during the rutting season. I have lived with deer in our neighborhood for almost 40 years.

We have always given them a wide berth and enjoyed seeing them from a distance until the past few years. As their habitat has been overtaken by development, they can be found in our backyard almost any time.

We have at least an acre of land, but even in the presence of our dogs in a fenced part of our yard, the deer come surprisingly close. Some of our eighbors began feeding the deer daily, so their numbers have increased.

People who feed them are creating a baby boom of deer that cannot be supported in an urban area. — Linda L., via e-mail

Cat pad

Dear Heloise: A dish-drying mat makes a good fit and a comfy pad to line kitty’s crate when traveling in the car. It is washable and dries quickly. On vacation with kitty, if another mat is needed, one can usually be found inexpensively at any “dollar store.” — Adele M., Derry, N.H.

Sock sorting

Dear Heloise: My husband only wears black socks, while I wear both white and black ones. We use different-looking mesh laundry bags for the blacks and another for my whites.

Just remember to zip them up before you do the wash. I also wash my bras in one and put any items I don’t want to get twisted in a large one. — Lee, via e-mail

Zesty tea

Dear Heloise: You had a recipe for a lemon-mint tea that my mother loved. I’d like to make that tea for her. Would you repeat the recipe? — Nicky G., Austin, Texas

Nicky, this is a favorite. You will need:

3-5 tea bags (regular size)

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1-2 teaspoons finely cut mint (fresh is best but dried will do. If you have dried mint, it is stronger, so use 1/2 the amount.)

Honey, brown sugar or any sweetener

Add hot water to tea bags and the mint. Steep for 5 minutes, strain, then add the lemon and sweetener.

Did you know how the tea bag was invented? A tea merchant wanted his customers to try his tea, so samples were sent out in little silk pouches, and the tea bag was born. — Heloise

Hint from him

Dear Heloise: Your advice about growing cacti reminded me of a gardening column that I read many years ago.

A reader asked how often to water her cactus garden, and the reply was to watch the weather in Phoenix: If it rains in Phoenix, water your cactus. — Rich F., Custer, S.D.

Time to brush!

Dear Heloise: Dentists want us to brush our teeth for two minutes each time we brush. I keep small digital timers in my bathrooms to time my brushing. — Mary C., via e-mail

(Heloise is a columnist for King Features Syndicate. Send a hint to P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE or E-Mail: Heloise@Heloise.com.)

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